In a recent study conducted by Veterans Affairs, both minimal and serious trauma resulting in a bone fracture for middle-aged and older people more often leads to additional broken bones. Since broken bones are the most common type of injuries suffered from a slip and fall and the incidence of slip and fall increase dramatically with age, this may lead to unforeseen complications regarding long-term injuries.
If you or someone you love were injured because of the reckless or careless actions of a property owner, contact the San Francisco slip and fall attorneys at Allegiance Law.
The study was conducted by Dr. Anne L. Schafer and Dr. Dolores M. Shoback of the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Health Care and published in JAMA Internal Medicine in June. The findings show that bone fractures in middle-aged to older individuals are referred to as “a distinction without a difference” – a scientific phrase meaning the severity of initial fractures does not matter regarding future fractures.
The results conclude future complications result not from an initial big or small break, but instead in how the initial break is treated. If a patient is tested for bone loss and undergoes bone-loss treatment, only 9% of Medicare patients sustained future fractures in the same location.
In those not tested for bone loss and treated, 20% percent of them suffered another fracture within three years. All too often in slip and fall cases resulting in fractures, physicians are reluctant to treat long-term, and patients often resist going past the immediate patching up of the initial injury.
Doctors should go past casting or surgical repair. They should be checking your bone health, and warning that if weakened bones contributed to the break, there is an increased risk of future breaks in the same location or other bones. This future fracture can happen regardless of if you are involved in a major accident or a minor mishap like slipping and falling.
Current medical-professional recommendations reinforce minimal treatment for broken bones in severe accidents and only associate enduring issues associated with fragile bones when a bone breaks after minor or no-trauma incidents.
These new findings show that no matter how a fracture occurs, doctors should evaluate a person’s overall bone health and advise the essential maintenance and treatment. Slip and falls may cause the injury, but fragile bones can act as co-conspirators and complicate the damage done and the long-term treatment.
If you are involved in a slip and fall incident, first and foremost, seek medical care for your injuries. If you can, document the cause of the slip and fall incident with photos or video evidence. If the accident happens on commercial property, get an incident report filled out by management. If there were witnesses, collect statements and information for a possible court case.
The San Francisco slip and fall attorneys at Allegiance Law have the experience to bring your case to a successful conclusion. We can help you investigate what happened and secure the compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or calling 415-404-6395.